The Messenger

Report on the Scientific Prioritisation Community Poll (2020)

  • Mérand, Antoine [European Southern Observatory (ESO)]
  • Andreani, Paola [European Southern Observatory (ESO)]
  • Cirasuolo, Michele [European Southern Observatory (ESO)]
  • Comerón, Fernando [European Southern Observatory (ESO)]
  • De Gregorio Monsalvo, Itziar [European Southern Observatory (ESO)]
  • Dessauges-Zavadsky, Miroslava [Department of Astronomy, University of Geneva, Switzerland]
  • Emsellem, Éric [European Southern Observatory (ESO); CRAL, University Claude Bernard Lyon 1, ENS of Lyon, France]
  • Ivison, Rob [European Southern Observatory (ESO)]
  • Kemper, Francisca [European Southern Observatory (ESO)]
  • Kerschbaum, Franz [Department of Astrophysics, University of Vienna, Austria]
  • Leibundgut, Bruno [European Southern Observatory (ESO)]
  • Liske, Jochen [Hamburg Observatory, Germany]
  • McLure, Ross [Institute for Astronomy, University of Edinburgh, Royal Observatory Edinburgh, UK]
  • Mroczkowski, Tony [European Southern Observatory (ESO)]
  • Origlia, Livia [INAF – Astrophysics and Space Science Observatory of Bologna, Italy]
  • Philips, Neil [European Southern Observatory (ESO)]
  • Sana, Hugues [Institute of Astrophysics, KU Leuven, Belgium]


ESO regularly updates its science- driven perspective in order to provide the best facilities and services for its community. As part of this exercise, ESO polled its users between January and February 2020. Questions were inspired by the previous poll, conducted in 2015, to probe any evolution of community opinions and profile, with an emphasis on the future of the Very Large Telescope (VLT) and the VLT Interferometer (VLTI). Of the approximately 17700 registered users targeted, 10% had accounts in both the ESO and European ALMA portals, another 14% were registered in the ALMA portal only, and the remaining 76% were registered in the ESO portal only. Some 3700 email addresses, predominantly associated with the ESO portal, were invalid. From the remaining approximately 14000 user accounts, 1673 complete responses were received, a response rate comparable to that of the 2015 poll. The present poll was split into three parts: 1) profile of respondent; 2) current and future observing facilities; 3) ESO in the coming decade. Here we summarise the results and provide some highlights from the poll.

Created: 2021-09-01/2021-09-30
7 pages

Cite this article:

A. Mérand, P. Andreani, M. Cirasuolo, F. Comerón, I. De Gregorio Monsalvo, M. Dessauges-Zavadsky, É. Emsellem, R. Ivison, F. Kemper, F. Kerschbaum, B. Leibundgut, J. Liske, R. McLure, T. Mroczkowski, L. Origlia, N. Philips, H. Sana; Report on the Scientific Prioritisation Community Poll (2020). The Messenger 184 (September 2021): 8–14.